Dhe Rhineland-Palatinate Justice Minister Herbert Mertin (FDP) has criticized a proposal by the EU Commission for chat controls in the fight against child abuse. This proposal was “naive and useless,” he said in Mainz. It is pointless to search through vast amounts of data on innocent citizens and suck it up like a giant vacuum cleaner in order to possibly come across child pornographic material.
The clarification of child abuse on the Internet is a major concern for him, he emphasized. In view of increasing digitization, in which perpetrators use the anonymity of the Internet and content spreads around the world at lightning speed, the fight against misuse on the Internet is one of the greatest challenges.
EU Interior Commissioner Ylva Johansson recently presented a bill that would oblige messenger platforms and other Internet providers to search their services for child pornography images. If there is a significant risk, national authorities or courts should be able to order the checking of possible criminal content using special software. On the other hand, there are concerns from civil rights organizations and politicians.
Justice Minister Mertin recalled a ruling by the European Court of Justice on data retention, according to which such an unprovoked and mass evaluation of data is inadmissible. On the basis of this case law, all regulations for the effective criminal prosecution of child abuse and the distribution of child pornography should be exhausted. Mertin suggested creating a legally secure legal regulation for the storage of so-called IP addresses, with which individual end devices could be identified, as quickly as possible.